After missing my stop, I’m unexpectedly walking
the 12th Street Bridge from Edgemoor.

Every few feet I stop, look down. From this vantage,
everything looks different: Padden Creek

an erratic meander, the trail a prominent gray band,
a trench from an outflow pipe a tributary channel.

I’m nearly to the north end of the bridge, see a fawn
far below, a world away.

Molting, the fawn nuzzles patchy hair close
to the base of its tail. Charmed with the fawn,

I watch — my delight undisguised. I continue on,
finally see the doe. Supine, she’s looking up,

watching me intently. Her eyes I know
are soft liquid brown pools. Her watchfulness

is exquisite and unnerving at the same time.
I want to reassure her that I am not a threat —

not to her fawn, not to her, but can’t.
I don’t know her language. Convincing her

that a human is not a threat would be a disservice.
She’s vigilant, knows the day can unhinge,

can turn clawed, fanged, bloody.
Worlds apart, we are united only in watchfulness.


Andrew Shattuck McBride
NaPoWriMo 2014 ~ Day 13

About Andrew Shattuck McBride

I am a writer, editor, writing coach, and consultant. I work in a variety of genres, including poetry, short stories, and creative non-fiction. I also have a couple of novels simmering on back burners. THANK YOU to Nan Macy of Village Books for taking this photo (June 2011).
This entry was posted in Andrew Shattuck McBride Writer, NaPoWriMo ~ 2014, Poets, Samples, Trail Offerings. Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to Watchfulness

  1. susanissima says:

    You captured a moment with such clarity I stopped breathing so as not to disturb fawn and doe.

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